The New European Consensus on Development calls on the EU and its Member States "to promote resource efficiency and sustainable consumption and production, including the sustainable management of chemicals and waste, with a view to decoupling economic growth from environmental degradation and enabling the transition to a circular economy". This commitment is meant to contribute to both the Planet and the Prosperity priorities of the European Consensus, reflecting a paradigm shift which better acknowledges the economic opportunities that "green" policies, markets and business practices can deliver, notably in terms of sustainable growth and job creation.


This vision has been consistently promoted through relevant policies and instruments, including:

The Communication "A stronger role of the Private Sector in Achieving Inclusive and Sustainable Growth in Developing Countries" which indicated that the EU will "promote eco-entrepreneurship and green job creation through the SWITCH to Green initiative";

The Communication "Achieving Prosperity through Trade and Investment", which states that "environmental sustainability will also be at the heart of aid for trade" and notes that "climate finance and the green and circular economy offer developing countries leapfrogging opportunities in trade, growth and employment";

The External Investment Plan, which foresees that "In order to fulfill the political commitment of the Union on climate action, renewable energy and resource efficiency, a minimum share of 28% of the financing under the EFSD Guarantee should be devoted to investments relevant for those sectors".

EU action on the inclusive green economy

In line with this policy framework and with lessons from relevant EU's cooperation experience in developing countries, 3 complementary areas of intervention characterize EU action on the inclusive green economy.Three complementary areas of intervention

  • Enabling frameworks, to ensure coherence between environmental and economic policies, and providing support to public institutions while promoting private sector and civil society participation in policy development;
  • Green business development, with a focus on the adoption of sustainable consumption and production practices by MSMEs;
  • Access to finance and the greening of investments, to improve capacities and practices of both businesses and finance institutions and to finance the green economy transition.

Policy and Strategic Documents

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